You’ve always loved staying fit and now want to help others do the same. You considered becoming a personal trainer but decided that career path wasn’t for you. However, the more you learned about integrative medicine, the more you knew that was the route you wanted to go. If you’re ready to jumpstart your journey into health and wellness, here’s what you need to know.
What is an Integrative Wellness Coach?
Integrative health and wellness coaches want to help others have an active, healthy lifestyle. They create a full-body and mental strategy that help people from all walks of life reach their wellness goals. These coaches use a variety of methods that improve one’s mental, physical and spiritual health. While many practitioners are self-taught or have specific certifications, others choose to earn degrees in nutrition and health.
Degrees in Health
If you choose to earn a degree in nutrition, you can attend online or in-person courses. Unless you already have credits to transfer in, it usually takes about four years to become a registered nutritionist. You can apply for a student loan to help pay for attendance and any additional books you may need to complete your degree. You can choose to attend full-time during the week or on a part-time basis. It’s important to note that it will take longer if you choose to go only part-time.
Research Different Programs
You should also research different programs before getting started. Look for various programs, including holistic health, mental wellness, and even fitness certification. These should be exclusive to any degree you choose to pursue.
Look for a Mentor
Ask around and connect with those who are already working in this role. Inquire about how they became a coach, if they had formal training, and how they set up their business. What did they add to their resume if they worked for someone else? Did they already have clients, or did they acquire them through their place of employment? There are many platforms available to connect mentors with mentees. One way to effectively use LinkedIn is to connect with professionals in your industry without geographical or in-person restraints.
Choose a Business Structure
If you’re going to work for yourself, you need to set up a business structure. First, you need to choose a name that’s easy to recognize and makes sense. You can then register as an LLC, which will protect your personal finances in case someone was to sue you. Afterward, you need to create a business plan. This needs to include your mission statement, funding options, and an executive summary. You also need to include how your marketing plan that outlines how you plan on reaching your target audience.
Even after you are credentialed, you still need to continue learning. Similar to other sectors of health and wellness, there are always need trends and developments emerging. Stay connected with like-minded people through meetups and sign up for continuing education courses.
Practice What You Preach
Most importantly, you need to follow your own advice. Live a healthy lifestyle that others will want to follow. Even though some coaches do otherwise, it usually becomes evident when they’re not following the same principles they set forth for their clients.
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Featured Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash